The greenest day of the year is on the way! St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated on March 17th, and it’s inspired us to show some love for our favourite green ingredients.
Eating your greens can be more delicious than you ever thought. From blitzing up a homemade pesto to adding in an extra handful of wilted spinach, there are lots of tasty ways to get more green goodness into every day.
Whether you’re celebrating St. Patrick’s Day or just looking to fill your plate with colourful, flavourful, healthy food, you won’t want to miss our favourite green recipes.
Very Green Zingy Kale Salad
This one’s so green, we even put it into the name of the recipe! Our Very Green Zingy Kale Salad just might be the crunchiest, zestiest, greenest salad out there. With kale, green beans, apple, green grapes, watercress and lime juice in the mix, you can be sure you’re on your way to 5-a-day.
By adding in wholegrain quinoa we’ve stepped this simple salad up a notch – quinoa is full of protein and fibre to help fill you up. The zingy dressing is sweetened with a touch of honey and balanced with a teaspoon of soy sauce, so that every bite of crunchy greens brings sour, sweet and salty flavours.
This easy recipe works as both a side dish and as a main course, so you can serve it on the side of your favourite meat or fish recipes, or enjoy it on its own as a lovely light lunch.
Courgette Ribbon, Lemon and Feta Salad
There’s something so eye-catching about a plateful of gorgeous greens, and this Courgette Ribbon, Lemon and Feta Salad is no exception. It’s super simple to rustle up, and on the table in just 10 minutes.
Using crunchy strips of raw courgette as the base of your salad makes such a nice change from the usual lettuce leaves and cucumber. Paired with the sweetness of fresh cherry tomatoes and the salty creaminess of crumbled feta cheese, the flavours are punchy yet refreshing.
This is one of our favourite side salads because it really does go with pretty much anything: try it with Chicken Gyros Kebabs, Balsamic Glazed Pork or a slice of Crustless Quiche Lorraine.
Cream of Spinach and Rocket Soup
You’ll never struggle to eat your greens when you can slurp them from a bowlful of this Cream of Spinach and Rocket Soup. The velvety blend of nutritious veggies is thickened by including a couple of potatoes in the mix, and finished with a good glug of oat milk to make it really smooth and creamy.
One of the best things about this soup is that you can adapt the flavour to suit your own taste buds. Adding more rocket will give a peppery flavour, while using more spinach will make it taste milder. Either way you’re guaranteed a big bowl of green goodness!
At just 143 calories per serving, we recommend dishing up this warming soup with a nice wholemeal bread roll on the side – you’ll want to mop up every last drop.
Chicken Pesto Salad
When it comes to green ingredients, there’s no denying that pesto is one of the best. Whether it’s shop-bought or homemade, the vibrant green colour and the herby taste boosts the flavour of all kinds of different dishes, from this Roasted Vegetable Tart, to this Chicken Pesto Salad.
The salad is every bit as summery as it looks – and it’s easy to make too. A little bit of shop-bought pesto goes a long way in this recipe. We’ve added water, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper to a few tablespoons of pesto, and then used half of it to marinate the chicken and saved half for the salad dressing.
Our salad calls for lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and radishes, but you can make yours even greener if you like! Throw in some spinach, green peppers or sugar snap peas…anything goes.
Spinach and Pesto Dip
Proving how easy it is to get more greens into your day, this next recipe turns snacktime into a vitamin-boosting treat! If you’re planning on having a few people over for St. Paddy’s day, this Spinach and Pesto Dip is a must-have for your buffet table.
Not only is the colour perfect for the occasion, it’s speedy to make and really tasty too. The chickpea-based dip gets its green hue from lovely fresh spinach, and the addition of garlic, basil and Italian hard cheese gives it a pesto-inspired tang.
We’re obsessed with dipping in slices of toasted pitta, but fresh vegetables work well too – chop up cucumbers, peppers, celery and carrot sticks and dunk them into the creamy green dip!
Creamy Pesto Chicken
We could eat this Creamy Pesto Chicken every single day. The tender chicken breasts are simmered in a green pesto-infused sauce that seems so much more indulgent than it really is. In fact, this recipe works out at only 376 calories per serving – it doesn’t get much more slimming friendly than that!
Using jarred pesto keeps things nice and simple. It melts into the chicken stock, creating a herby, garlicky sauce that gets even creamier when you stir in some reduced-fat cream cheese. With green beans and sun-dried tomatoes included in the recipe, you’ll only need to add some Homemade Oven Chips or Creamy Mashed Potatoes on the side.
Cheesy Courgette Gratin
Courgette is often such an underrated vegetable. Versatile and mild in flavour, it’s perfect for adding into so many different dishes when you need an extra pop of green. We’ve made it the star of the show in this Cheesy Courgette Gratin, and it’s well worth giving it a try.
Layered up with slices of potato and tomato, everything gets coated in a thyme-seasoned mixture of stock and melted cream cheese, before being baked in the oven. Topped with Cheddar cheese and Parmesan, just wait until you see how golden and gorgeous this looks when it’s ready.
Imagine serving it alongside your St. Patrick’s Day roast dinner, or spooning some onto the side of this Tomato and Basil Chicken.
Spinach and Parmesan Orzo
As a main meal or a side dish, this Spinach and Parmesan Orzo may not be the greenest dish on this roundup, but it’s too tasty to miss! We love cooking with orzo – it’s ready in a flash and it works with loads of flavours.
In this recipe, the orzo is mixed into a creamy, cheesy sauce until it has a consistency similar to a risotto. When it’s silky and luxurious, it’s time to wilt in that vibrant green spinach and finish it off with Parmesan and black pepper.
You really can’t go wrong with this recipe, and at 257 calories per serving, it works as a side dish or a filling lunch that’ll keep you going until dinnertime.
Creamy Cod and Spinach
Double up on your greens with this Creamy Cod and Spinach recipe. With leeks and spinach on the ingredients list, you know you’re getting lots of nutrition from this quick, easy dinner.
Fish is great when you want to eat a really slimming-friendly meal, and this cod is simmered in a creamy lemon and garlic sauce that makes it taste a lot more indulgent than it is. At 232 calories per serving, all that’s missing is a few extra greens on the side. We’d recommend adding these Garlic Green Beans for a moreish crunch.
One of our favourite Indian-inspired side dishes, Saag Aloo is another delicious dish that gets its gorgeous green colour from spinach. This simple recipe is just onion, potato, spinach and a whole bunch of aromatic spices.
The spice-coated potatoes are roasted in the oven until they’re golden and crunchy, and then the spinach is added right before serving. Great for dishing up on the side of a curry, you could also bulk it out with some broccoli and enjoy it as your main. The more greens the better!
What green-themed dishes will you be trying?
Even if you’re not making a big deal of St. Patrick’s Day, we hope we’ve inspired you to get more greens into your day to day meals. Head on over to our Facebook group to let us know which recipes you’ll be giving a go.
For more inspiration, take a look through the Pinch of Nom Gallery to see what everyone else has been cooking up lately! It’s so easy to share your photos – just sign up for a free website account and upload your pics. We can’t wait to see them!
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